Dark and Fruity Malbec – Argentina’s Flagship Wine

Malbec - Argentina's wineMalbec is a grape variety that traces its origins to South West France, where it is known as Cot.

It is a variety that produces intensely colored, dark-hued wines with a hard tannic style. At present, Malbec is considered Argentina’s flagship wine style, and the country’s vineyards make up the world’s largest acreage of this grape.

The Distinctive Qualities of Malbec

Argentine Malbec is vastly different from the wine produced from the same grape variety in France. The vines in Argentina have smaller, more tightly clustered berries, and

The vines in Argentina have smaller, more tightly clustered berries, yielding wine with a deep color, strong fruity flavors, a markedly velvety texture, and a different tannic structure.

Jancis Robinson, author of Jancis Robinson’s Wine Course: A Guide to the World of Wine, says, “…Good Argentine Malbec, and there is a great deal of it for Argentina is one of the world’s most prolific wine producers, is deeply colored, spicily rich with an exuberant juiciness and has as a trademark an almost velvety texture…”

Robinson further describes Argentine Malbec from different micro-environments.

“ …In Patagonia (Neuquén and Río Negro) the climate is slightly colder and altitudes are less extreme, which leads berries to retain acidity, yielding wines with notes of ripe black fruits in combination with a marked mineral tone.

The north (Salta and Catamarca), instead, is one with the sun and high altitude. The wine from this region expresses a unique personality: aromas of very ripe red and black fruits, black pepper and paprika, with a very solid structure of solid, sweet tannins.

Malbec expresses itself very well in regions with broad temperature ranges and calcareous, clayey or sandy soils as those found at the foot of the Andes. These geographic and climatic features make the Argentine product stand out, particularly for the quality of its tannins: sweet, silky and mouth-filling…”

Food Pairings

This wine variety is very good with hard cheeses that have a strong flavor, and it is excellent for pastas served with red sauces, particularly those that have a meat base. A meal achieves perfection when red meats and grilled meats achieve perfection are paired with Malbec because it is a wine that can hold its own and complement the strongest of flavors, including barbecue sauce.

The next time you host or attend a barbecue, throw in a bottle of Argentine Malbec and see how it fares against the usual beers and reds.

How to Get the Best Malbec

If you want a bottle of good Malbec on your table, remember that a quality wine has a purplish black color with a distinguishable violet hue. The tannins of good Malbec are silky, never overpowering. Make sure that your wine has a distinctively fruity aroma and taste, redolent of red cherry, plum, blackberry, or blackcurrant, and if possible, make sure it is from Argentina.

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